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Section 8

The Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) program is a tenant-based program that provides monthly housing assistance payments in the private rental market. The Morristown Housing Authority (MHA) maintains 424 Section 8 vouchers. The goal of the Section HCV program is to assist very low income families by subsidizing a decent, safe, and sanitary home. Currently, MHA can serve individuals and families in Cocke, Greene, Hamblen, Jefferson Counties and Bean Station.

Voucher holders select a unit from the private rental market, and rental assistance makes market rate housing affordable. A Section 8 participant pays no more than 30% of the family's adjusted income towards rent and utilities. The Housing Assistance payment covers the balance of the rent through a direct payment to the property owner. The tenant portion of the rent may not exceed 40% of the family's adjusted income if the family chooses a unit where the gross rent exceeds the voucher payment standard.

Eligibility for a voucher is determined by the Authority based mainly on gross income and family size. During the application process, MHA will collect and verify income, assets, and family size with local agencies, employers, and banks. If MHA determines your family is eligible, your name will be placed on a waiting list. Once your name is reached on the waiting list, MHA staff will meet with the you to provide your rental voucher.

Once your family has been issued a Housing Choice Voucher, you can search for a unit that meets the Housing Quality Standards (HQS) established by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). After you find a suitable unit and the owner agrees to lease to you under the HCV program, MHA will inspect the unit to make sure it meets the HQS guidelines. After the unit passes HQS inspection and the rent is approved, the landlord and the tenant will enter into a lease for an initial term of one year.

The Section 8 HCV program benefits participants, property owners, and the local economy by reducing the local rental market's vacancy rate and by reducing the number of homeless families in the areas served.